The doctor will ask about any symptoms, and medical and family history. There will be questions about whether you have problems initiating sleep, staying asleep, waking up early, or feeling tired despite seeming to sleep for a normal amount of time.

To make a diagnosis of insomnia, the doctor will ask about:

    
  • Excessive fatigue or daytime sleepiness
  • Impairment of attention, concentration, or memory
  • Impairment in social, occupational, or academic performance
  • Moodiness or irritability
  • Diminished motivation, energy, or initiative
  • Occurrence of frequent errors or accidents at work, or while driving
  • Presence of tension headaches or gastrointestinal distress from lack of sleep
  • Preoccupation with sleep
  • To help determine a cause of insomia or any associated conditions, the doctor will ask about:

        
  • Moods or mood changes
  • Physical or mental symptoms or problems
  • Daily activities
  • Work pattern or history
  • Sleep patterns
  • Snoring
  • Medication use
  • Travel patterns
  • Eating habits
  • Use of alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs
  • You may also be asked to fill out a sleep diary, which is a record of your sleep patterns. Your doctor may want to speak with your bed partner concerning the quantity and quality of your sleep. Other specialized tests may be ordered depending on what your doctor suspects may be the cause of your insomnia.

    In some instance where the diagnosis is not clear, your doctor may order a polysomnogram (sleep study), where your sleep is analyzed during a 1 or 2 night stay in a sleep lab.